Lobsang Sangay, Prime Minister of the Tibetan administration in India, on Wednesday urged Japanese lawmakers to back the 'middle-way approach' of autonomy for the Tibetan people.
Addressing the Japanese Parliament, Sangay congratulated Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's successful meeting with US President Donald Trump.
"As Abe has said Japan will play a leading role in the international community by coordinating its foreign policies with the US, I urge him to support our 'middle-way approach' towards seeking genuine autonomy for the Tibetan people," he said.
Reiterating that Beijing has no legitimacy in recognising the next Dalai Lama, Sangay said: "Look at their track record. They have destroyed 98 per cent of the monasteries and nunneries. So what credibility they have in recognising the reincarnation of His Holiness.
"Tibet is a litmus test for countries for their moral standard and their expectation for human rights. It is a collective responsibility of the Asian countries who share Tibet's Buddhist civilization and those who depend on Tibet for water to address the issue of Tibet," Sangay added.
In his address, Shimura Hakubun, Chairman of the Japanese Parliamentary Support Group for Tibet, underlined the need to support the preservation of Tibet's Buddhist culture.
The Japanese Parliamentary Support Group for Tibet comprises 87 members of Parliament, the largest parliamentary support group in the world.
Describing Japan as a country which respects human rights, democracy and morality, Yoshiko Sakurai, head of the think tank Japan Institute of National Fundamentals, urged Tokyo to step up its efforts to support the Tibetan people.
The Dalai Lama has lived in exile in India since fleeing his homeland in 1959. The Tibetan administration is based in Dharamsala.